Scene on Campus

Van Gogh in New Haven

Visiting masterpieces at the Art Gallery.

The Yale University Art Gallery had two unusual visitors from New York City this summer. For three months, Vincent van Gogh's masterpieces The Starry Night and Cypresses, both completed in June 1889, were on display in an intimate exhibition on the gallery's third floor. (Starry Night is owned by the Museum of Modern Art, Cypresses by the Metropolitan Museum of Art.)

Bob Handelman

Bob Handelman

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The show provides a view of Van Gogh “at the height of his creativity,” says Jennifer Gross, the Seymour H. Knox Jr. Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art. Although Van Gogh produced the paintings during his self-imposed yearlong confinement at an asylum in Saint-Remy, she adds, they “show that many of the cliches about the artist are simply not true”: the paintings weren't the result of a “manic riff.” Rather, they show “remarkable attention to detail, skilled observation, and a highly refined, mature painting style.”

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